Annie Tobey, editor of BOOMER magazine
“This organization has supported a healthy Richmond by encouraging healthy behavior for people from all walks of life (training teams and events, programs for kids, programs for underserved communities) and through sports tourism, which contributes to financial health for the region.”

Carlene attended a Fitness Warriors Reboot class in her community to lose weight and help with knee problems. The next class, she decided to bring her 11-year-old daughter, Kayla, along with her.

Kayla, who has an intellectual disability and club feet, was apprehensive at first and stood quietly with her hands clasped. She told LaCora, the instructor, that she was nervous. LaCora said she was too, and they’d just be nervous together. Kayla also told the instructor that she hoped she didn’t play “old people music”!

LaCora is an instructor for Fitness Warriors, a program of Sports Backers that trains community members to lead free fitness classes throughout the Richmond region. These classes are often held in underserved areas, which lack access to gyms, fitness centers, and safe or connected places to get exercise.

Before long, Kayla found her groove to the instructor’s music (apparently not “old people music”!) and started to relax. After class, LaCora asked the young girl if she’d come back to help her get over her nervousness again, and Kayla said she would.

After several classes, the balancing exercises were beginning to help Kayla walk better. Kayla has even led the class in sprints!

“She’s resting better during the night which has helped her focus at school,” says her mom, Carlene.

Over the several classes the young girl has attended, LaCora has also noticed Kayla’s confidence increasing. By taking a step to improve her own health, a mom has made a difference in her daughter’s life, too!

Help break down barriers to healthy and active living by volunteering or donating to Sports Backers.